Funeral Music
  • Can anybody give me a good list of funeral hymns that is a good mix between chant and OCP regulars (i.e., Be Not Afraid). Thanks so much. I've already decided on "The Strife is O'er" as the processional.

  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    Be still my soul
    In every age (Sullivan Whitaker)
    Panis angelicus (Lambilotte)
    Ubi Caritas (chant or Hurd, not Rosania)
    I heard the voice of Jesus
    Shall we gather at the river (mixed crowd)
    Precious Lord (ditto)
    Jerusalem, my happy home
    (Haas haters, beware) Eye has not seen
    Come to me and drink (Hurd)
    With all the Saints (Hurd)
    We walk by faith/In times of trouble (Bridge)
    The Farewell (heh, heh, heh, one of mine)
    syrup, but an alternate to OEW, "Fly like a bird" (Canedo)
    Dies irae (we're doing it Thus. at a matriarch's)

    Sorry, off the top o' me head-waiting for news about the prognosis of my beloved cat, Plunkett. He survived the night, yay!
  • henry
    Posts: 224
    Entrance: Grant them eternal rest O Lord (Worship III number 161)
    Entrance or Offertory: Jesus Lord Have Mercy (Adoro Te Devote melody, WLP)
    Communion: I Am the Bread of Life (Toolan) or Keep in Mind (Deiss)
    Recessional: May Choirs of Angels (Worship III number 178) or May the Angels Lead You (Marchionda/WLP)

  • Mel, presuming the funeral is the OF, when will you use the Dies Irae?
  • I've secured a soloist, so have decided to go with the following.

    Processional: The Strife is O'er
    Response: Psalm 23-Chabenel Psalmody
    Missa Simplex mass parts
    Agnus Dei
    Offertory: Jesu, Dulcis Memoria
    Communion: Franck, Panis Angelicus
    Communion Meditation: Schubert, Ave Maria
    Commendation: May the Angels
    Recessional: How Great Thou Art (family favorite)

    What do you think? Remember, this community is very country and coming off of 10 years of P&W.
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    Thanked by 1Chris Hebard
  • Earl_GreyEarl_Grey
    Posts: 873
    (Haas haters, beware) Eye has not seen

    Actually that one's by Haugen. Though it sounds a lot like "We have been told" which is by Haas. I often confuse the two. :)

    Other standard hymns to consider without duplicating those already mentioned:
    I know that my redeemer Lives
    Sing with All the Saints in Glory
    O God Our Help in Ages Past
    The King of Love My Shepherd Is
    Any Easter hymn

    Top 10 most requested funeral songs:
    1. On Eagle's Wings (overdone, but still better than Fly like a Bird)
    2. Be Not Afraid
    3. Amazing Grace
    4. Make Me A Channel of Your Peace
    5. How Great Tho Art
    6. Here I am Lord (kind of ironic, if sung from the perspective of the deceased)
    7. You Are Mine
    8. I am the Bread of Life
    9. Shepherd Me O God
    10. Ave Maria, Schubert

    Thanked by 1Gavin
  • GavinGavin
    Posts: 2,799
    Looks like a great list, MT56.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,428
    Top 10 most requested funeral songs...
    Putting aside whether it's appropriate for liturgy, or if the style is awful, or whether you think the texts are silly or heretical, or whether superceding the propers is good/bad idea. Forget all of that for a moment....

    Anyone notice that the Top 10 (which I believe are accurate) are a bunch of songs that pretty much have nothing to do with funerals, death, grieving, resurrection, celebrating life, or any other thing that makes any direct sense when related specifically to Mass for a dead person?

    Just my opinion.
  • Earl_GreyEarl_Grey
    Posts: 873
    Sad but true.

    Just to be clear I wasn't suggesting anything in the top 10 with the possible exception of Ave Maria. I used to joke that I would leave a list of 10 songs not to play at my funeral, but I think just asking for the propers as a dying wish would be sufficient.
    Thanked by 1Adam Wood
  • Adam, I completely agree with your opinion on those funeral hymn selections. At my parish, those use to be the "go to" hymns, but I have ask my pastor for control over the funeral hymns at the church. He is in completely agreement with me.

    We use to use standard hymns but have since chAnged to more appropriate selections.

    I use I know that my Redeemer lives by Scott Soper for offertory and without seeing you by David Haas for communion. Two good choices, in my opinion

    For psalms, I use either the 23rd gelineau psalm or a 23rd psalm by Hagney, an Australian composer. Love that setting!

    Ad perennis vitae fontem from the 11th century.

    This has several translations, I am uncertain which is best.

    adapted from a mediation by Augustine of Hippo:

    1. At the Fount of Life eternal Parched minds in thirst must stand ;
    While the soul in fleshly bondage, longs to burst her weary band ;
    Striving, struggling, as an exile, to enjoy her Fatherland .

    2. There the moon no longer changes, sun ne'er sets, nor fades a star ;
    But the Lamb of that blest city Is the Light that streams afar ;
    Night and time are ever absent, ceaseless day no shadows mar.

    3. For the saints, as suns all radiant In eternal beauty shine ;
    There with crowns of triumph honored, All their mutual joys combine,
    O'er the prostrate foe victorious, They the wreath of victory twine.

    4. Now made clear from every blemish, Carnal strifes are all forgot ;
    Body spirit soul united, join to praise their happy lot,
    Perfect peace forever tasting, ever free from scandal's blot.

    5. Stripped of all their changing garments, Here they seek their origin,
    Here behold their Lord, the present Form of Truth, unstained by sin,
    Hence the vital sweetness of The living Fountain drinking in.

    6. Thence they draw a power of being, Measured not by Time's short scroll;
    Clear and vivid, joyous ever, They are free from harm's control ;
    Sickness shuns the ever healthful ; feeble age the youthful soul.

    7. Here they have an endless being, Since the passing passed away ;
    Here they bloom, they grow, they flourish; since corruption saw decay,
    And the strength of Life immortal Brought to naught Death's mortal sway.

    8. What can they who know the Knower Of all things now fail to know ?
    For the bosom's hidden secrets each to each will ever show ;
    What they seek or shun is mutual In Love's unity they glow.

    9. Diverse the reward of merit, seeking which in toil each strove ;
    But love makes its own the pleasures, which its dear companions love ;
    So the joy of every spirit Common joy of all shall prove.

    10. Where the Body is by right the Gathered eagles waiting stand
    Thus have holy souls refreshment With the angels glorious band;
    Citizens together; eating one Bread in one Fatherland.

    11. Ever full, yet ever longing, Holy souls have all they need ;
    Never vexed by surfeit's loathing, Never pained by famine's greed :
    Eating still they never hunger, hungering still with joy they feed.

    12. Ever with melodious voices Heaven's new harmonies they sing ;
    On the ravished ear ecstatic Strains from harps all golden ring ;
    To the King, Who made them victors, Worthy songs of praise they sing.

    13. Happy soul who sees Heaven's Monarch Seated in majestic state,
    While beneath His Lofty Throne The Rolling worlds attendant wait ;
    Sun, and moon, and stars, and planets - Giant guards of glory's gate !

    14. Christ, the Palm of valiant warriors, Lead me to Thy blest abode,
    When I lay aside war's girdle ;- When I quit this weary road,
    Make me sharer in the portion On Thy citizens bestowed.

    15. Grant Thy strength to one now laboring In the yet unended fight,
    Nor refuse when strife is over, Quiet as the conqueror's right,
    Let me merit to possess Thee as my Prize in endless light.

  • This is the other translation.

    1. AT the fount of life eternal Faints the parchéd soul with thirst,
    For the imprisoned spirit restless Seeks the flesh's gates to burst,
    Struggling, yearning, for the country Whence it has been banished erst.

    2. While it wails it's sad condition, Pressed by grief, by sorrow crossed,
    Sad it looks upon the glory It's delinquency has cost ;
    Present misery increases Memory of the blessings lost.

    3. For of everlasting quiet Who the joyousness can tell?
    Where in edifices splendid All of living pearl they dwell,
    While with burnished gold the buildings And the couches gleam as well.

    4. Gems alone of countless value Are the town's foundation seat,
    Polished gold like beaming crystal Forms the paving of the street;
    Mud there smears not, dirt appears not, No diseases do we meet.

    5. Winter braming, summer flaming, There relax their blustering,
    And sweet roses ever blooming Make an everlasting spring,
    Lily blanching, crocus blushing, And the balsam perfuming.

    6. Pasture growing, meadows blowing, Honey streams in rivers fair,
    While with aromatic perfume Grateful glows the balmy air ;
    Luscious fruits that never wither Hang in every thicket there.

    7. There nor waxing moon, nor waning, Sun, nor stars in courses bright ;
    For the Lamb to that glad city Shines an everlasting light.
    There the daylight beams for ever, All unknown are time and night.

    8. For the Saints, in beauty beaming, Shine in light and glory pure,
    Crowned in triumph's flushing honours, Joy in unison secure,
    And in safety tell their battles And their foes' discomfiture.

    9. Freed from every stain of evil, All their carnal wars are done,
    For the flesh to spirit turned And the soul agree in one,
    Peace unbroken spreads enjoyment, Sin and scandal are unknown.

    10. Stript of changefulness, united To primæval being's spring,
    And the present form and essence Of the Truth contemplating,
    Lo! they quaff the vital sweetness Of the well of quickening.

    11. Thence departing, aye in sameness They their lofty state engage,
    Beauteous, keen, and gay, and noble, Unexposed to chance's rage ;
    Health is theirs untouched by sickness, Endless youth unmarred by age.

    12. Here they live in endless being, Passingness has passed away,
    Here they bloom, they thrive, they flourish, For decayed is all decay,
    Hungering still, they eat ; and eating, Still the sacred food require.

    13. Lovely voices make a concert Ever new and ever clear,
    And in never-ending festal Organs sooth the ravished ear ;
    Worthily their king they honour Who obtained them victory's cheer.

    14. Who shall see Heaven's Monarch present, O ! how blessed that happy soul,
    And, beneath its throne of glory, Watch the orbs of nature roll,
    Sun, and Moon, and Stars, and Planets, As they course around the pole.

    15. CHRIST, Thy soldiers' palm of honour, Unto this Thy city free
    Lead me, when my warfare's girdle I shall cast away from me,
    A partaker in Thy bounty With Thy blessed ones to he.

    16. Grant me vigour, while I labour, In the ceaseless battle pressed,
    That Thou mayst, the conflict over, Grant me everlasting rest,
    And I may at length inherit Thee my portion ever blessed.

  • Sequence; De profundis exclamantes
    in an english metrical translation. This is in the same meter as
    pange lingua.

    (this is what the "dies irae" superseded in the 15th c.)

    Christ, enthroned in highest Heaven,
    Hear us crying from the deep,
    For the faithful ones departed,
    For the souls of all that sleep;
    As Thy kneeling Church entreateth,
    Hearken, Shepherd of the sheep.

    King of Glory, hear our voices,
    Grant Thy faithful rest, we pray;
    We have sinned, and may not bide it,
    If Thou mark our steps astray;
    Yet we plead the saving Victim,
    Which for them we bring today.

    That which Thou Thyself hast offered
    To Thy Father, offer we;
    Let it win for them a blessing,
    Bless them, Jesu, set them free;
    They are Thine, they wait in patience;
    Merciful and gracious be.

    They are Thine, O take them quickly,
    Thou their Hope, O raise them high;
    Ever hoping, ever trusting,
    Unto Thee they strive and cry;
    Day and night, both morn and even,
    Be, O Christ, their Guardian nigh.

    Let Thy plenteous loving-kindness,
    On them, as we pray, be poured;
    Let them through Thy boundless mercy,
    From all evil be restored;
    Hearken to the voices pleading
    Of Thy Church, O gracious Lord.

    When, O kind and radiant Jesus,
    Kneels the Queen, Thy throne before,
    Let the court of Saints attending
    Mercy for the dead implore;
    Hearken, loving Friend of sinners,
    Whom the cross exhalted bore.

    Hear and answer prayers devoutest,
    Break, O Lord, each binding chain,
    Dash the gates of death asunder,
    Quell the devil and his train;
    Bring the souls which Thou hast ransomed
    Evermore in joy to reign.

    TRANSLATION: Richard F. Littledale, 1906
    Thanked by 2Adam Wood Gavin
  • oldhymnsoldhymns
    Posts: 191
    I am frequently asked to supply music to people planning funerals who want to get away from the "top 10" type of stuff mentioned earlier. Truly, as Adam Wood pointed out, they are a "bunch of songs that pretty much have nothing to do with funerals, death, grieving, resurrection, celebrating life, or any other thing that makes any direct sense when related specifically to Mass for a dead person."

    This is what I have suggested:
    Before Mass: Prayer for a Perfect Life (Cardinal O'Connell)
    Processional: My Soul Doth Long for Thee
    Introit from Gregoiran Requiem
    Offertory: Mother of Christ
    Sanctus and Agnus Dei and Lux Aeterna from Gregorian Requiem
    Communion: O Lord I Am Not Worthy and Heart of Jesus, Hear (meditation)
    Recessional: Jesus, Keep Me Close to Thee

    All of the above-mentioned English hymns have specific references to life's closing (except perhaps "O Lord I Am Not Worthy.")

    Two other English hymns that can be worked in that are also useful are "O Take Me To Thy Sacred Heart" and "Let a Pious Prayer Be Said."

    In a number of cases, I have been told, some of these hymns have become "regulars" once they were introduced. Some priests may not mind the Sanctus and Agnus Dei in Latin but would prefer that the Requiem Aeternam (Introit) and Lux Aeterna (Communion) not be used--I guess because they don't know them.
    Thanked by 1Don9of11
  • donr
    Posts: 969
    I will do "With the Lord" by Joncas for offertory on occasion.
  • We have a basic outline that we seldom vary. Introit "Requiem aeternam," Psalm 23 or 27 in English setting to psalm tone by Fr. Jeff Keyes, at the Offertory- instrumental (or a hymn from the Vatican II Hymnal), Eucharistic Acclamations either from Mass XVIII or the "Community Mass" of Proulx, Communio Lux aeterna with De Profundis psalm (from Richard Rice's "Communio," at the final incensation chant "Ave Maria," retiring procession- "In paradisum & Chorus Angelorum." Father tells families that, everyone who is buried from Saint Edward receives the same Requiem as popes, kings, saints and faithful have received through the ages. The antiphons for the Introit, Psalm, Eucharistic Acclamations & Communio are printed in a simple leaflet.
    Thanked by 2donr Jenny
  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,912
    Procession: Requiem Aeternam (Grant them Eternal Rest), You Are Mine (Haas), I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say (Kingsfold), The King of Love My Shepherd Is (St. Columba), Be Not Afraid, On Eagle's Wings, Abide With Me, Softly and Tenderly Jesus Is Calling

    Offertory: Hosea (Weston Priory), Amazing Grace (New Brittain), On Eagle's Wings (Joncas), Here I Am Lord (Soper), Eye Has not Seen, The King of Love My Shepherd Is (St Columba), Be Thou My Vision (Slane)

    Communion: Take and Eat, One Bread One Body, Panis Angelicus, We Are Many Parts, One Love Released, I am the Bread of Life, Ubi Caritas

    Recessional: In Paradisum, How Can I Keep From Singing, We Walk By Faith, Joyful Joyful We Adore Thee, I Know That My Redeemer Lives, Softly and Tenderly Jesus Is Calling, Irish Blessing